Otter Progress – Development is almost there…

28 08 2008

Just a quick update since it has been 2 weeks since the last post. I have mentioned previously that once semester starts it gets pretty crazy. Well, in the 2 weeks I have been teaching and marking, but also getting some development done. And I am happy to say I have had some major things happen.

Firstly, I have about 70 participants for my final data collection in a month. It will involve students using my application to see how it helps them with Object Oriented Program Design, and I just had to get them to fill out Consent Forms so that everything is above board with the Ethics department. Hopefully this gets me the last data I need!

The other major thing has been in the development side of things. Here are some screen shots of the current version. It has come a loooong way since the last postings. Not only does it look better, but it is very functional… almost the point of unleashing it. So final development can hopefully be sorted over the weekend and then into the hands of some testers. How exciting!

… Matt

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Wow… these bricks do give a little…

12 08 2008

My last post had a nice image of a brick wall. I just typed into Google image search “Otter puts head through brick wall”. I actually got lots of results, just none with an otter with its head through a brick wall (no… I wasn’t expecting to get that picture). So I typed “head through brick wall” and this image was about the 3rd result. I laughed, so here it is.

(from http://www.compumagic.com)

Silliness out of the way, I managed to solve a couple of problems in my development that really had me stuck and a little despondant. The main one was one of those times when you are saying to yourself “I am sure I have tried it this way, but let’s give it another go”. Anyway, some stars aligned, my office filled with an orange mist with gold sparkles (as our resident goat would say), and it worked. Phew.

So I have one more main thing to solve and then I think it is tidy up (touch wood). Fingers crossed that at the end of this week I am pretty close to having the main functionality all working. Hopefully…

… Matt





Otters hitting their heads against brick walls

11 08 2008

It had to be too good to be true. After a few weeks of stellar progress, I have hit the wall in my development. This is because of a few things…

The first is that I have struck two things I need to do with my code that it just won’t do. I know there will be ways to do it, but one particularly is just frustrating the hell out of me. The longer I look at it, the further away a solution seems. So in part this entry is me trying to take my brain away from it for a moment.

The second problem is not really a problem, but a reality. Semester is underway and slowly but surely other commitments sneak in. Teaching, supervision, a meeting here, a meeting there. Then your week has disappeared. My load this semester is quite good, but things are starting to pile up 😦

The final influencing factor I guess is being against the clock. I really have to have this nutted out as I want to do some evaluation of it in class in a month or so. So I need to get this puppy sorted and some preliminary testing done like by yesterday. Nothing like a deadline to bring out your best!

So, here is hoping that moment of clarity comes sometime today. Please. Pretty please? Maybe it is time to change my music.

… Matt





Otter Development Screenshots

22 07 2008

Sorry to bump you from the top post Lucie… just popping some development screenshots up so I can trace the progress of the actual application as I develop it!

Here we have some screenshots of rough but functional steps through my student activity.

… Matt